RENO, Nev. – We have a first look at some of the newest designs you’ll seen in the skies during the Great Reno Balloon Race in September.
The Great Reno Balloon Race announced a full slate of special shaped balloons Wednesday, including the world famous “Spyder Pig” balloon.
The event is being held September 6 - 8 at Rancho San Rafael Regional Park and is now in its 32nd year.
This is the largest free hot air-ballooning event in the world, is celebrating the 30th anniversary of Dawn Patrol with a spectacular glow show that will have more than 50 balloons illuminating the early morning air.
This year there is also a mobile app that allows fans to track and interact with their favorite balloons.
Great Basin Brewing Company is also creating a “Dawn Patrol Brew” which is the official 2013 event beer.
“This event has gained a reputation around the world as a true festival of flight and creativity and, each year, we work to bring the top balloons, sponsors, vendors and activities to make this a true sensory overload for the more than 100,000 spectators that visit the Balloon Race every year,” said Pete Copeland, GRBR executive director. “With the activities and balloons that we have planned for this year’s event, we are confident that this will be one of our most memorable years ever.”
“Spyder Pig,” made famous in the animated TV series “The Simpsons,” will join “Jewel” the hummingbird balloon, which is making its U.S. inaugural flight debut, and “Betty Jean the Butterfly,” returning for only its second flight at The Great Reno Balloon Race. Both “Jewel” and “Betty Jean the Butterfly” will be part of the Wilbur May Foundation’s The Great Reno Balloon Race Tethered Ride Program which benefits the Children’s Cabinet.
The GRBR Mobile App, designed by Chris Griffin and local digital company Elucidate Inc., will feature many of the same features as the event website, including the schedule of events and parking information. Additionally, through the app’s map feature, fans will be able to see where every balloon is located in real-time and receive pilot and sponsor info for each balloon. There is also a vendor and services map, which will also show where all of the various sponsors and vendors are located along with restrooms, parking lots and more.
“We are so fortunate to have so many great fans, volunteers, sponsors and supporters that work very hard to keep this event free while making it dynamic and exciting,” said Copeland. “The mobile app is the latest example of how our friends and partners came together to even further heighten the experience for fans of all ages and there is no question it’s going to be a big hit.”